April 15, 2020 Subject:
(effectively) lost show
This show is known for the Dark Star. In fact, rather specifically, for a section of the Dark Star, led by Phil. Latvala called this section the Phil-O Jam. Because it was a riff that Phil played several times in the era, it became known, in the internet age, as the Philo Stomp. It's just Phil chording, but repetition has given it a name - and therefore presumptive cachet. Not that it's not kewl. There are other interesting sections of this show too, but the problem is no good sources. This show is not in the vault and there is no original SBD. The sources come from Bear's cassette. This may be a test tape; probably for Billy so he could hear himself (band members sometimes made this request, and a specific mix was made on cassette). Nowhere can you hear the whole band, in fact sometimes it's just Billy's snare, one of the vocal mics and one of the guitars. It's frustrating, but there are many tapes like this, and honestly, in the fall of '72 there is a surplus of better shows. Apparently some WANT to hear only these parts of the band? Here and there you might get off.
First Set. They half-ass it for Promised Land, regardless of the poor mix. Since you can hear only half the band on Friend of the Devil, qualitative evaluation is elusive. The mix improves slightly starting from Jack Straw, and you can tell it's a decent China Cat. The mix implodes to shite again on Box of Rain. Most of the solo is cut from a middling Me & Bobby McGee plagued with tech difficulties. Bobby says they have to fix a Trouper follow, though that wouldn't effect the band, per se. Jer then plays Teddy Bears' Picnic. Bobby complains that the marshmallows being thrown are becoming a plague because he's wearing wafflestompers. For you kids, that's what people used to call Vibram (rhymes with tree gum) rubber soles. Phil then warns that they can't be used as a pick or bounced on a drum. Other than a buffed 1st verse and atrocious mix, it sounds like Candyman was great in person; certainly a fine solo. The mix is a little better for a clearly-good Sugaree (at least, if you use mono switching). Bobby lays brilliant fills behind Jer's verses. Most '72s are not as fleshed out, and you can hear Phil now (but still no Keith). There's a cut @17:53 in Playin', probably missing ~30secs. It's lots of wandering without arriving.
Second Set. He's Gone has a hard ending. The last couple minutes are of interest. The mix is better, though still poor. The next couple are below average for '72, but Greatest Story transcends the mix, coming across as boisterous, and tighter than a stepdad's wallet. After an almost-as-good Brown Eyed, Beat It On Down the Line-8 has a cut, with most of the solo missing. This is a swell Attics of My Life. Light on instrumentation, it's sadly the last one until '89. The Dark Star is likely whatcha came for. This is not the only Dark Star with a Philo Stomp. He played it in both Dark Star and The Other One (10/18, 10/24-TOO, 10/28, 11/13). He then tried to revive it months later, steering the others into it briefly on 6/10/73 & 12/19/73. The 10/28 is one of the two big ones (the other, 11/13, is best). It's a pretty standard Star, but @16:55, during a quiet passage, Phil spots his chance to drive. He starts chording on bass for a min & a half before it devolves. This is followed by some fine sections, with long ocean swells. A must-hear-once. Sugar Mag comes unexpectedly, when Bobby launches (it has a cut @2:47). The rest hits the buffers.
1st Set: C+ 2nd Set: C
Overall = 2¾ stars
Greatest Story Ever Told - boisterous
SOURCES: The cotsman_20301 is still the circulating copy, with a horrible mix. The ashley-bertha_20405 is remastered to bring up Phil in the mix. Problem is, that only further emphasizes Billy's extremely loud kick. That's all we get with this one.
October 28, 2013 Subject:
Yeah, I can't stand badly mixed SBDs. If you turn it up to the point where you can hear the instruments, the vocals rattle the walls.
March 25, 2013 Subject:
Not a great recording at all
Sorry folks, I have been listening and just can;t stand that I can't hear Jerry's guitar!!! Where the hell is it?!?! Listen to Candyman and sugaree something happnes after their technical difficulties during the horrible Bobby Mcgee and Garcias guitar is muffled and htere is little distinciton between the instruments. The china rider and everything up to bobby mcgee is terrific. The vocals are clear and wonderful the rest of the sound totally blows. The music is uninspired and the leads totally are a massive dissapointment. This show is likely great too bad you just can;t hear the most important instrument in the band. Not a fan- lame sound quality ( its great if you don't care about hearing Jerry play). Thanks for the upload but tot hwe other reviewers- I cant trust any of your 5 stars reviews...
December 17, 2010 Subject:
What a beautiful version ... there's nothing like those three distinctive voices weaving those harmonies, with the added bonus of Keith playing some wonderfully subdued piano to back it all up. All that's missing is Pig's organ. *sniff*
Adding: with all due respect to Dylan's and Feather's comment (and Dick and Gans, as well) I just don't "get" the greatness of this Dark Star, and likewise have never found the Philly '72 shows to hold a candle to that which came shortly before or shortly after. When I listen to this Dark Star (or the Philly Star), I think of Spinal Tap's "prog" period. It's head, shoulders and belly button below the Europe Stars and the Kesey Creamery Star (the last of the best '72 Dark Stars, IMHO) and not even above the toenail of the Dane County '73 Dark Star or some of the other cornbelt Stars from '73.
Your mileage may vary of course.
October 29, 2010 Subject:
This Dark Star was actually selected by Dick Latvala & David Gans to be played at Jerry's Memorial service (08/13/95. As was the Dark Star from 09/21/72 & 10/18/72. All 3 are life changing however I always give the nod to Philadelphia 09/21/72. This one (10/28) is my 2nd favorite Dark Star of all time. However I find every Dark Star from 72 to have that special something. Every Dark Star from 1972 deserves a listen...or two.
February 26, 2010 Subject:
Billy on Drums
I love the time in Deads history when they only had one drummer. It is so obvious that Billy was such a better drummer than Mickey Hart and this Dark Star is a prime example.
Listen to Mickey on Live Dead. On a few songs he is clearly playin' out of time over some simple structures. He just was never the well-rounded drummer that Billy was. I bet Billy could have played in a jazz trio with Miles or Coltrane based on how he plays over this Dark Star.
This show is a rare five out of five for me (which I rarely give out)!!
February 24, 2010 Subject:
Great Show Excellent Dark Star
As others have said the Dark Star is one of the best. It seems as though the 72 shows after September 72 don't get the press. Probably because the Sept. shows were so good, but this one, IMHO, beats even those, and there are many others in Oct. worth checking out (10-18-72).
July 1, 2009 Subject:
Excellent Dark Star
This Dark Star is bad ass. From roughly minute 16 to 21, the jam takes on a much rockier/funkier approach than on most Dark Stars of 72'. Less space, more tight jamming. The jam isn't anything like those mind left body ones that the boys liked to do in 73'. This show is very unique because of its sweet Dark Star. Get it if you can.
June 12, 2008 Subject:
Diabetes is bad
If you get diabetes, then 1) stop drinking Sugar Magnolia, 2) don't drink anymore Sugaree, 3) take metformin and a sulfonyurea, and 4) for heaven's sake lose some weight and get your blood pressure under control!
The great antidote for Type III diabetes (Grateful Dead induced) is to listen to lots of Dark Star while smoking pot and taking an ACE-I like lisinopril or captopril. You save your kidneys and get totally wasted at the same time!
As my husband bound and gagged me with grateful dead music, I found Dark Star to be especially irritating. I fell asleep and woke up 3 days later, and the same thing was playing. Is that a normal side effect? Anyhow. Sugaree was good. So was Sugar Magnolia. I like things with sugar. However, listening to this too many times in one day could lead to diabetes.
March 29, 2007 Subject:
i give alot of 4 star ratings (hey, i love these guys)but not many 5 star ratings...but i have a hard time not pulling the trigger on these latter half of '72 shows...especially when the sound is this good. somebody mentioned billy's drumming in the mix, and indeed he sounds great. classic jazz drumming during the Dark Star...which is a powerful version, with Jerry getting after it and staying tight. Attics is gorgeous, He's Gone great... so much here! 5 for sure.
March 28, 2007 Subject:
The Day I Was Born
i was born the day this concert was played; i had to hear it for myself being i was newly hatched out of the womb...lol. too bad it took 15 years from birth to find the Dead. What an awesome show!!!
May 24, 2006 Subject:
fall of 72 -- some of the Dead's best jamming
This Star is crazy!
light and dark... full of sweet surprises.
adjust the eq a bit for Phil
February 8, 2006 Subject:
I knew it was out there somewhere
I can' believe that I can slisten to such a choice recording of my first Dead show!! I can still see the giant mirrored "disco ball" splashing multi couored stars across the Public Hall during Dark Star, and the cut out of a steam engine behind the band during Casey Jones. Sounds great. It was over 33 years ago, but I thought that there was an opening act...that's what I get for thinkin' I guess. Thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU!!
January 26, 2006 Subject:
Friend Of The Devil
China Cat Sunflower
I Know You Rider
Box Of Rain
Tuning and stage banter
Me & My Uncle
Playin' In The Band
Don't Ease Me In
Greatest Story Ever Told
Brown Eyed Women
Beat It On Down The LIne
Attics Of My Life
Johnny B. Goode
January 15, 2006 Subject:
Dark Star Special
Hey Fellow Star Lovers. Don't miss this one for gosh sake!! Read what the always thoughtful Robert Goetz says in The Compendium. Overlook at your own peril!
December 19, 2005 Subject:
Vintage 1972 sound. Good recording. The set list doesn't even cover half of the tunes played.
April 11, 2005 Subject:
I'm sorry, what I meant was WOW!!!
The first thing that jumps out about this one is that the drum mix is fantastic... it's like Billy is set up in my living room. Great show all the way around. Very energenic, and a wonderfully freaky Dark Star.